Michaël Burri has said the hardest thing about retiring from the Sibiu Rally yesterday was the fact he lost the opportunity to increase his experience of driving his Peugeot 207 Super 2000 on gravel.
The 24-year-old Swiss was attempting to recover some of the time lost with a spate of punctures on the opening day of the Intercontinental Rally Challenge event in Romania when an errant stone broke his car’s timing belt and caused the engine to fail on the first stage of day two.
“It’s really disappointing because I was here to learn and increase my experience but that wasn’t possible,” said Burri, who was making his IRC debut alongside co-driver Stéphane Rey.
Despite his restricted running, Vincent Ducher, Burri’s team boss at Saintéloc Racing, was impressed with his young driver’s progress.
“Before the problem he was driving very well and the car was perfect,” said Ducher. “He was finding the pace and understanding the gravel, which was new to him with this car.”